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Home :: Archive :: 2004 :: May ::
The Murder of Gonzago
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1025  Friday, 7 May 2004

[1]     From:   D Bloom <
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        Date:   Thursday, 6 May 2004 09:57:18 -0500
        Subj:   RE: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago

[2]     From:   Jack Heller <
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        Date:   Thursday, 6 May 2004 13:51:50 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago

[3]     From:   Peter Bridgman <
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        Date:   Thursday, 6 May 2004 22:03:55 +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           D Bloom <
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Date:           Thursday, 6 May 2004 09:57:18 -0500
Subject: 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago
Comment:        RE: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago

My having questioned how WS could have been influenced by the KJV, Bill
Arnold offers this curious rejoinder:

"OK: of course in Hardy's SHAKSPER archives I have made all this clear,
as well as in my book *JESUS: The Gospel According To Will*.  Yes, of
course it was to earlier versions of the *Bible* which Will S. had made
his thousands of literary allusions, and Shakespeare scholars knew
whereof I spoke.  Read my book!  Must I again cite Shaheen's *Biblical
References in Shakespeare's Plays* and Noble's *Shakespeare's Biblical
Knowledge*?  As always, and I have said this repeatedly, I refer to the
KJV because of the supposed involvement in its translation by Will S.,
and its relevance to the Shakespearean Age.  C'mon, all, use Hardy's
archives on SHAKSPER!  Prove yourself worthy of the moniker: scholars."

I gather he is saying that what he said was admittedly wrong on the
surface, but I would have known what he really meant if I had rummaged
through the archives and/or read his book. For this failure, he suggests
that I am no scholar. Of his odd ideas about what constitutes a scholar
I have nothing to say (except what I've just said), but as to books and
archives, I tend to assume that people mean what they say.

What he said was, "Will S. knew full well these *Will* words in their
totality in the KJV as referenced by his myriad thousands of literary
allusions to the text.

They culminate in the KJV, Matthew, C 6, Vs. 9-13, also known as the
Lord's Prayer, especially, V. 9-10, "Pray ye: Our Father...Thy kingdom
come.  Thy will be done on earth, as *it is* in heaven."

As one erstwhile scholar to another, I suggest that if he doesn't mean
literally the KJV he should not use the acronym KJV, or else append a
note that he is using KJV to denote all English translations of the 16th
and 17th centuries. Otherwise, it appears that he doesn't know what he's
talking about.

Cheers,
don

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jack Heller <
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Date:           Thursday, 6 May 2004 13:51:50 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago

Some of this thread may make one long for the "good old days" when the
Merchant of Venice proved that Shakespeare was himself a Jew.

Jack Heller

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Bridgman <
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Date:           Thursday, 6 May 2004 22:03:55 +0100
Subject: 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1020 The Murder of Gonzago

Bill Arnold wrote...

 >Yes, of
 >course it was to earlier versions of the *Bible* which Will S. had made
 >his thousands of literary allusions, and Shakespeare scholars knew
 >whereof I spoke.  Read my book!

Do you refer to other translations of the Bible as the KJV in your book too?

 >I refer to the
 >KJV because of the supposed involvement in its translation by Will S.,
 >and its relevance to the Shakespearean Age.

What was WS' "supposed involvement" in the KJV?  Are are you referring
to the Psalm 46 nonsense?  Since the KJV translators were all Hebrew and
Greek scholars, theologians and Anglicans, isn't it extremely unlikely
they'd ask a non-graduate actor-playwright to help them out?  Especially
one with Papist patrons and (supposedly) Papist sympathies.

WS knew the Bishops Bible (1568) from his schooldays and from the
(apparently rare) occasions - like family funerals - when he attended
Anglican services.  The Bishops Bible was a huge volume, designed to be
read in church.  Far more portable, and far more popular, was the Geneva
Bible (1560).  If Shakespeare owned a Bible, it was probably a Geneva
Bible - or (if the Geneva footnotes annoyed him as much as they annoyed
King James) a Rheims New Testament (1582).  The Rheims Old Testament
(1609) and KJV (1611) appeared too late to have any influence on WS'
writing.

Since the KJV took years to gain acceptance (even the KJV translators
used the Bishops Bible in their later writings), and since WS died less
than five years after its publication, it is entirely possible that WS
never even opened a copy.

Peter Bridgman

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